Here's What Actually Happens When You Eat An Apple Before Bed

If an apple a day keeps the doctor away, does an apple before bed go straight to your head? Taste better with bread? Leave you feeling like lead? These are the kind of questions we need answers to now, before we go one more apple-free night, or worse: miss a new food trend opportunity. Healthline is quick to point out that apples are one of nature's no-strings-attached gifts — they're tasty, filled with nutrients, and easy to prepare. (As in, pick one off the tree or out of a fruit bowl, and eat it. You don't have to be Ina Garten.) Recent studies even show that apples contain melatonin, a sleep chemical naturally produced by your brain when the lights go out, to signal to your body that it's nighty-night time.

But as the Irish Sun would have us remember, apples are also acidic; and anyone with acid reflux will tell you that high acid levels in your tummy at night is no bueno, as your digestion slows and those acids have a chance to really build up while you sleep. Per The Sun, it might be better to eat an apple in the morning, and use that fiber to break down your breakfast as you go on about your day, instead. 

So, which advice is the correct one — and what happens when you eat an apple before bed, anyway?

Apples won't make or break your sleep cycle, so go bananas

According to Healthline, eating apples right before bed is not going to make too much of a difference one way or the other. The fruit has plenty of benefits that might improve your overall sleep: eating apples regularly will ensure your Vitamin C levels are good, they are high in fiber and antioxidants, and they are a "low GI carb," which means their effect on your blood sugar levels is minimal. In other words, apples are good for you, and while they might not specifically promote sleep, your chances of sleeping better improve when your health is in good shape.

As for the downsides to the apple-before-bed model, there are a few that the outlet notes. Yes, eating just before bed might go against your circadian rhythm, and yes, late-night snacking might increase your risk for obesity or high cholesterol. But is one measly — not mealy, hopefully — apple going to do all of that? Probably not, according to Healthline. And while Healthline is also happy to recommend some healthy late-night snacks — like kiwis, or bananas with nut butter — they submit that apples haven't really been proven to hurt or help a good night's sleep... so if you want one before bed, no one's gonna stop you.